Illness or injury

"It's never too late to start"

A year ago Rosemary was struggling to walk with crippling knee pain. After losing 60kg, she's off on her dream European holiday where she'll skip the cobbled streets pain free with boundless energy!

Rosemary's weight loss story

Name: Rosemary Macpherson
Weight loss: 60kg
Was: 125kg
Now: 65kg
Height: 1.57m
Age: 70
How long it took: 1 year 
How she did it: Online and Group Coaching at Penrith, NSW with Coach Ellen Mouwen

Before & Now

​“ I love travelling and when I went overseas, I’d book two seats so I could fit, plus I’d ask the flight attendant for a seatbelt extender, which was embarrassing. ”

I was brought up to eat

When I was born, in 1944, there was a lot of rationing because of World War II. Growing up, my mother thought we were lucky to be able to have food so she never stopped us eating and I ended up very overweight. I tried losing weight at various times but got fed up with not being able to have the unhealthy things I wanted – I lacked self-discipline.

I had to book two plane seats

I love travelling and when I went overseas, I’d book two seats so I could fit, plus I’d ask the flight attendant for a seatbelt extender, which was embarrassing. Being overweight is also very uncomfortable – you get hot, chafed and tired easily. By my late sixties, my arthritic knees were so painful that I couldn’t walk 500m without stopping for a rest, and sometimes my knee would collapse under me. I needed a knee replacement, but I knew the doctors wouldn’t operate on someone so heavy – especially since it was my weight that had caused my knee problems in the first place.

I was out of breath on stage

I’m also an amateur actor and was finding it exhausting – I was constantly out of breath on stage. When I was offered my dream role as a witch in a comedy play, I thought, ‘This is where it stops’. I knew I had to get the weight off my knees to be able to cope.

My husband and I joined together

My husband Stewart and I joined Weight Watchers together and immediately started losing weight. My food intake didn’t change that much in terms of volume, but the types of food I was eating did. I’d make vegie soups and looked at the vegetarian menus in restaurants, which I never would’ve done before.

My swimsuits got smaller and smaller

As I shed the kilos, I started getting more energy and was able to increase the distance I walked. I also started swimming laps for the first time in years, slowly swapping large swimsuits for smaller sizes – I began in a size 20 and now I’m a 12.

We start each day with a walk together

My husband was my biggest support, and we were always prompting each other to eat better. Now we start each day with a 3km walk before breakfast. He lost 27kg and became a Lifetime Member a year before I did, and has maintained that weight loss ever since.

Hitting Goal was amazing

At the beginning, I said I wanted to try to halve my body weight. I didn’t honestly think it would be possible but amazingly, I almost did it. My doctor and I originally set my Goal at 70kg but I actually got down to 65kg. I ended up taking that dream part in the play, too – and they had to pad out my costume to make me look fatter!

I'm going on a dream cruise

I’ve had my knees operated on now, and we’re going on a riverboat cruise in Europe soon – it’s something I’ve always wanted to do but wanted to be able to walk freely. Now I’ll be able to skip lightly down the beautiful cobblestoned streets!

Rosemary Macpherson

Rosemary's weight-loss tips

Eat your greens: I used to be a carnivore, with meat taking up half the plate, and vegies just a garnish. Now I’ve halved my meat intake and doubled the vegies.
Just do it: We live in the Blue Mountains in NSW and during winter it’s freezing cold in the mornings, but my husband and I wrap up and get out there for our walks, regardless.
Keep going: There were a couple of plateau periods, but I learnt to accept it and not give up. I tried extra exercises and drank more water, and eventually I got there.
Maintain your lifestyle: We do a lot of travelling but we always stick with the Program. We take our laptop with us and keep tracking, and manage to keep the weight off.